April 18, 2008

Hey, time to be boring, self-absorbed and pedantic. But hey, when you’ve mostly been focussed on yourself while recuperating, that’s to be expected.  Everyone should be on crutches (or something similar) for a while in their lives.  Not to wish misfortune on anyone, but there’s nothing quite like to completely change your perspective.  

Here’s the deal: for the last two weeks and for the next four weeks every single move I make has to be very carefully considered.  That’s because movement at this point comes at a price.  First, it’s bloody tiring going up down the stairs on crutches.  You’d better want to get where you’re going because it’s not easy getting there and when you arrive you will likely plunk down and spend some time just catching your breath.  The other thing is, and more significantly … every little trip somewhere hurts. Standing at the kitchen counter for five minutes to make a sandwich hurts … like an S-O-B …. so if you’re going to  make a sandwich you have to consider whether you really want a sandwich.  There’s no, “oh, I think I’ll just stand here for a while and think about whether I’d like something”.  For the next four weeks I will NEVER stand in front of the fridge wondering whether or not to eat something … the cost is not worth it. To narrow it even further, if I have decided that I’m going to make something and I’m standing over by the stove, if I decide that I’d like a plate, this is not trivial matter.  I can’t reach the plates from the stove, so I have to get there … then when I get there I have no spare hands … both of them are used for travelling via crutches.  So, if I’m going to get a plate I have to think of a strategy for getting the plate from over there to over here.  Not only that, but I have to consider whether I can get the plate with the food on it to where I’m going to eat.  Nothing is easy, and while all of this is going on I’m in pain, because every moment spent vertical hurts … so, you don’t mess around with movement.

So, this is an interesting experience because it brings your focus way down.  Life is very different when every move you make is carefully thought about, and when you do something … even something very small … it’s been carefully considered. This isn’t a better way to be, but I think that at least for a brief time when I’m able to walk again, I’ll realize how free we are when we’re totally mobile and I’ll realize how much is going into the little things that we take for granted.      


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